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European Week of Regions and Cities

10/07/2019 - 10/10/2019


What is it?

The European Week of Regions and Cities is an annual Brussels-based four-day event during which officials from regions and cities’ administrations, as well as experts and academics, can exchange good practices and know-how in the field of regional and urban development. It is also an acknowledged platform for political communication in relation to the development of EU cohesion policy, raising the awareness of decision-makers about the fact that regions and cities matter in EU policy-making. The European Week of Regions and Cities is the biggest European
public event of its kind.

What actually happens?

At the beginning of October, some 6 000 participants and 600 speakers from all over Europe and beyond gather together in Brussels for a programme of some 100 working sessions, exhibitions and networking events on regional and local development. The programme is adapted every year to the specific context of the EU agenda. Participation to the event is free of charge.

Why a “week” for regions and cities?

Regions and cities are involved in the making of most EU policies. Sub-national public authorities in the EU are responsible for one-third of public expenditure (EUR 2 100 billion per year) and twothirds of public investments (about EUR 200 billion), the latter often to be spent in accordance with EU legal provisions.

How did it start?

Back in 2003, the European Committee of the Regions, the EU’s assembly of regional and local representatives, invited Brussels-based local and regional representations to the European Union to open their doors to visitors simultaneously as part of a joint “Open Days” concept. Over the years, the initiative has developed into a key annual event involving the European Commission and other stakeholders.
In 2016, the event was renamed “European Week of Regions and Cities”, dropping the heading “OPEN DAYS”. This was to avoid confusion with the annual “Open Doors / Open Day” Brusselsbased events yearly organised in May by all EU institutions around Europe Day, as well as with similar events held by the Commission’s Representations in the Member States on the same occasion.

How does the European Week of Regions and Cities encourage local events across Europe?

In connection with the Brussels-based European Week of Regions and Cities, each Regional partnership is invited to organise a local event under the ‘Europe in my region/city’ initiative in the format of a citizens’ dialogue or political debate and include a member of the European Committee of the Regions. The objective of these citizens’ dialogues is to listen and report back directly on the discussions taking place in cities and regions.
The local events are aimed at a wide range of participants including the general public, policy makers, experts, local and regional authorities, and the press, to raise awareness of the impact of EU policies in regions and cities.

What is the impact of the European Week of Regions and Cities?

Since its beginning, the impact of this event has been systematically evaluated. Participants have highlighted in particular the usefulness of information from the EU institutions and the networking with colleagues from other countries as being relevant to their professional management of EU funds. The importance of the event is also proven by its significant media impact. For years now, up to 300 print, radio, TV and online media journalists from all over Europe have come to Brussels to cover the event.


Square Agora Village
Glass Entrance Mont des Arts/Kunstberg
Brussels, Belgium
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+32 2 515 13 00